Naomi Osaka reveals period when she thought about retirement for month

Osaka makes a retirement admission ahead of her tennis return in Brisbane.

by Dzevad Mesic
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Naomi Osaka reveals period when she thought about retirement for month
© Getty Images Sport - Bradley Kanaris

Naomi Osaka, 26, reveals ahead of her comeback that she was thinking about retirement for a month after 2022 Tokyo. 

In late 2022 September, Osaka competed at a WTA 500 tournament in Tokyo. In the first round, Osaka took on Daria Saville, who was forced to retire the match after just a couple of minutes due to a terrifying torn ACL injury.

In the Tokyo round-of-16, Osaka was scheduled to meet Beatriz Haddad Maia. But that match didn't happen after Osaka gave a walkover to Haddad Maia due to illness. Osaka didn't play any tournaments in the remainder of 2022. 

After opening up about her battle with depression and anxiety during the 2021 French Open, Osaka appeared in just three more tournaments in the rest of 2021. Osaka didn't play much in 2022 neither as the Japanese took part in just 11 tournaments. 

"I would say right after Tokyo for, like, a month maybe I was thinking about retirement because I felt like all my joy went away for the sport. I felt like it kind of wasn't fair, both for the people watching and myself. But then I thought, I've played tennis since I was three and there's so many more things that I want to do," 26-year-old Osaka said in her pre-tournament press conference in Brisbane.

Naomi Osaka
Naomi Osaka© Getty Images Sport - Kiyoshi Ota
 

Osaka set to play her first tournament since 2022 Tokyo in Brisbane

Osaka, who announced the birth of her first child in July, is set to play her first tournament since 2022 Tokyo in Brisbane. On Saturday, the four-time Grand Slam champion Osaka learned that she would play against Tamara Korpatsch in the Brisbane first round. Osaka, a former world No. 1, and world No. 84 Korpatsch will be clashing against each other for the first time when they meet in Brisbane.

Since Osaka hasn't played in a long time, it wouldn't be surprising to see the Japanese feeling a bit rusty on the court. In the past, Osaka made two deep Brisbane runs as she was a back-to-back semifinalist at the tournament in 2019 and 2020.

Naomi Osaka
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